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Monday, August 30, 2004


Dr Jekyll, Mr Hyde?

::In the murder of T. Kumaresan is the latest in the series of senseless killings which have troubled the Malaysian scene recently. He was the People’s Progressive Party Wangsa Maju division deputy Youth chief. The Star had this account regarding his murder. He was said to have been killed while trying to diffuse a conflict between a group of vandals and flat residents of a housing area in Setapak. The Star reported that T. Kumaresan was described by friends as a "helpful person".
The Malay Mail also carried reports of the murder, describing it as a "a senseless death which could have been avoided". The People’s Progressive Party (PPP) president Datuk M. Kavyeas when expressing his sadness over the senseless murder of Kumaresan, had this to say ::
"I have lost someone good...his death is also a loss to the division and the Federal Territory, It is one of the most effective divisions in terms of offering social services."

"He was hard-working and always ready to help those in need," said Kavyeas who is also Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, soon after his arrival from visiting his constituency in Taiping, Perak.

The Malay Mail report said that Kumaresan’s mother-in-law, P. Susie, 45, said the deceased had been the pillar of strength for the family. She added ::
"You cannot find a son-in-law like him. He even supported his six sisters. I am very sad. I don’t know what to say," said the distraught woman from Kulim, Kedah.

Having read these reports, one can only conclude that Kumaresan was a "pillar of strength", a helpful person and a good PPP leader. It would not be wrong to say that his senseless murder had resulted in a great loss.

But the New Straits Times seem to have a differing account and headlined its report thus :: Vandalism not linked to death of PPP Youth leader. This NST report claimed that vandalism ie the smashing of cars, did not lead to his murder. According to this report, Kumaresan was returning to Wangsa Maju in his car when a motorcycle emitting "loud revs" overtook his car. He gave chase and ended up at the motorcyclist's house. There an argument broke out and Kumaresan was struck with a knife in the ensuing exchange of blows. The report also carried a rather different picture of Kumaresan, it had this to say ::
Kumaresan, also known as "Chinna Kanna" and who is believed to have had at least three previous run-ins with the law for gang-fighting and robbery, was rushed to hospital, where he died.

Now there you have it these contrasting accounts of the murder and the victim, the NST report painting a totally different picture of Kumaresan. The NST and Malay Mail are from the same stable of newspapers, which is the correct accounts of Kumaresan and his murder? All can't be correct. If what the Star and Malay Mail have to report are right, the NST account can only be extremely distressing to the family and even the PPP. Can we expect more light to be shedded on this?



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